The Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Lands Act requires BOEM to award leases competitively, unless BOEM determines there is no competitive interest. In November 2010, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) initiated the leasing process offshore Maryland by issuing a Request for Interest (RFI) to gauge industry’s interest in obtaining commercial wind leases in an area offshore of Maryland.
Materials relating to the RFI are provided below.
Call for Information and Nominations
In Feb. 2012, BOEM published a Call for Information and Nominations (“Call”) to solicit lease nominations and request public comments about site conditions, resources and other existing uses of the identified area that would be relevant to BOEM’s potential leasing and development authorization process. Materials relating to the Call are below.
BOEM identified the "Call Area" in consultation with its intergovernmental Maryland Renewable Energy Task Force, which includes federal, state, local and tribal government representatives. The Call Area offshore Maryland contains nine whole OCS blocks and 11 partial blocks. The western edge of the Call Area is approximately 10 nautical miles from the Ocean City, Md., coast, and the eastern edge is approximately 23 nautical miles from the same location. The longest part of the north/south portion is approximately 13 nautical miles and the longest part of the east/west portion is approximately 13 nautical miles. The entire area is approximately 79,706 acres.
On Feb. 3, 2012, BOEM also published in the Federal Register a Notice of Availability of an Environmental Assessment (EA) and Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) for commercial wind lease issuance and site assessment activities on the Atlantic OCS offshore New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia. Consultations ran concurrently with preparation of the EA and included consultations under the Endangered Species Act, Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, and the Coastal Zone Management Act. In June 2012, BOEM published a Finding of No Historic Properties Affected for the Issuance of Commercial Leases within the Maryland Wind Energy Area.
BOEM will next publish a Proposed Sale Notice (PSN) to include proposed terms and conditions for a lease sale in the Maryland Wind Energy Area (WEA). The PSN is expected to be published in the Federal Register by the end of the year. There will be a 60-day public comment period on the PSN. BOEM will consider comments received during the comment period in preparing a Final Sale Notice (FSN) that will provide the final details of the lease sale for the Maryland WEA. BOEM expects to hold a lease sale for the Maryland WEA in 2014.
BOEM coordinates Outer Continental Shelf renewable energy activities offshore Maryland with its federal, state, local, and tribal government partners through its Intergovernmental Renewable Energy Task Force. BOEM also coordinates public information meetings to help keep interested stakeholders updated on major renewable energy milestones. To obtain information discussed during these meetings click on the links below
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